where the writers are

Favorite Books

Rather than talk about favorite books, it's more accurate for me to mention reading experiences that have stayed with me in the sense that I can still visualize where I was when I read the book. Those experiences were Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea,
Joyce, Ulysses, Aldous Huxley, The Perennial Philosophy, Spinoza, Ethics, Carl Jung, Memories, Dreams and Reflections.

What I'm Reading

Because I'm presently learning French, most of my reading is in French and about the art of translating. At present I am
slowly making my way through a short story by du Maupassant. I also just started the most recent Patricia Cornwell novel, whose title escapes me.

Favorite Authors

My favorite authors tend to be mystery writers - Henning Mankell, whose books I just finished reading in order; Fred Vargas, a
wonderfully quirky French mystery author, most of whose work has not been translated unfortunately; Archer Mayor, whose
books center on Vermont and New England and who is far more than the regional writer he might appear to be; Cara Black whose mysteries take place in a different arrondisement of Paris. Her descriptions of the various Paris neighborhoods are like guide books in their wonderful detail.


It is difficult to talk about influences because there have been many, but some have been of short duration and others lifelong. So, I will talk about the lifelong. The first name that comes to mind is Aldous Huxley whom I began reading in the late fifties when he had a monthly column in Esquire magazine. Huxley showed me that it was possible to write across genres and to write about almost anything. My most enduring influence has been musical, not literary, and that is J.S. Bach. I listen to music often as I write and the complexity and order in Bach's music encourages me to dare. These are the two who have been with me for almost all my life. If other names come to me, I will add them later.